Earth Art

About – 350 Earth Art 2010

This November 20-28, 350 EARTH will launch the world’s first ever global climate art project. In over a dozen places across the globe, citizens and artists will create massive public art installations to show how climate change is already impacting our world as well as offer visions of how we can solve the crisis. Each art installation will be large enough to be seen from space and documented by satellites generously provided by DigitalGlobe.

350 EARTH will be the first-ever global scale group show on the front line of climate change—our polluted cities, endangered forests, melting glaciers, and sinking coastlines. People around the world are invited to take part by attending signature events, submitting their own art, and spreading the word about the project.

350 EARTH will take place on the eve of the next United Nations climate meetings in Cancun, Mexico where delegates will work to create an international climate treaty. Our politicians have all the facts, figures, and graphs they need to solve the climate crisis. What they lack is the will. 350 EARTH will demonstrate the massive public support for bold climate action and the role that art can play in inspiring humanity to take on our greatest challenge: protecting the planet on which we live.

About – 350 Earth Art.

Announcing the Open Call for Art & Science Collaborations, Inc. (ASCI) – Digital 2010

Announcing the Open Call for… Digital’2010: PLANET EARTH

Art & Science Collaboration’s 12th international digital print competition/exhibition to be held at the New York Hall of Science October 3, 2010 – January 31, 2011

Submission deadline:  August 16, 2010

INTRODUCTION

Our blue planet, spinning like a jewel in our solar system, has been perceptually defined by the technology of each era, from believing it was flat, to the scientific understanding that Earth spins on its axis and has gravitational pull, to being part of just one of many solar systems. In terms of scale, humans are too small to viscerally comprehend our planet’s magnitude and the dynamics of its interconnected physical systems. We therefore break the concepts down into smaller parts, collect data and physical specimens of all kinds, and invent instruments to measure and track physical phenomena like earthquakes, tornados, and hurricanes. However, we still cannot grasp the “big picture” of planet Earth unless we read, look at photos, and finally… use our imagination to envision/conceptualize it!

For Digital’2010, we invite artists and scientists to submit their original digital prints that reflect their perceptions of our planet. Are these perceptions changing as we learn more about Earth from explorers, scientists, and artists? What is the relationship between all living things and planet Earth? What images are evoked by calling it the blue planet or the peaceful planet or the changing planet?  What is the human impact on the whole planet? What is our concern for its future?

CO-JURORS

Maddy Rosenberg, artist, curator, owner/director Central Booking Gallery, Brooklyn, New York City

Patrick Hamilton, Director, Environmental Sciences and Earth-System Science,  Science Museum of Minnesota

Click here for Juror Bios…

TIMELINE

  • Aug. 16, 2010: Entry deadline [midnight Pacific Time/USA]
  • Aug. 20, 2010: Notification of Juror Selections via email
  • Sept. 22-29, 2010: Artworks must arrive at the museum
  • Oct. 3, 2010: Exhibition opens at New York Hall of Science
  • Oct. 3, 2010: Online Exhibition opens at ASCI’s website
  • Oct. 3rd [3-5pm]: Reception at New York Hall of Science
  • Jan. 31, 2010: Exhibition closes at New York Hall of Science
  • Jan. 31, 2010: Arrange for pick-up or return shipping

NEXT STEP!

Click here for GUIDELINES…[must read] This page also has links for sending online Entry Form and making your Online Payment.

ASCI’s SUPPORT OF DIGITAL PRINTS:

ASCI was one of the first organizations in the world to recognize the digital print as a valid fine art product in 1998 by organizing an afternoon panel discussion, “Collectibility & the Digital Print.”The event was held in The Great Hall at Cooper Union, New York City, in conjunction with ASCI’s first international digital print competition/exhibition.

Click here to see ASCI’s 11 previous archived digital print online exhibitions

ABOUT ASCI

Founded in 1988, Art & Science Collaborations, Inc. (ASCI) is an international organization based in New York City. Its mission is to raise public awareness about artists and scientists using science and technology to explore new forms of creative expression, and to increase communication and collaboration between these fields.  Explore our extensive archives of past Exhibitions, Featured Members, ASCI Member News, and Homepage Listing, and discover the amazing resource information in our monthly ASCI eBulletin. [a benefit of membership]

via Art & Science Collaborations, Inc. (ASCI) – Digital 2010 – Intro.

Linda MacDonald: Stories from the North Woods

While living in Northern California the last five years, I have seen work by many artists who are concerned with environmental issues. The paintings and fiber works by Linda MacDonald have continued to inspire me during this time and I recently had the opportunity to curate a small show of her graphic narratives at Gallery Route One in Point Reyes (Marin County). The show was part of WITH THE EARTH: Art and the Environment project at GRO, an ongoing exhibition series initiated in 1990 in response to the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

Below is an excerpt of my catalogue essay:

Most can only imagine what it is like to witness first hand the social and economic impacts of the logging industry in the Pacific Northwest. For those living in urban cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, etc., or wide open spaces in the southwest, we know on a visceral level that over time the removal of large areas of old growth, or Rainforest, has a “fragmenting” effect on us all.

Linda MacDonald, however, experiences the visual evidence of our insatiable consumption daily in her own backyard. Born in Berkeley, and raised in Marin, she moved to Mendocino County in Northern California with her husband in 1970. They purchased fourteen acres in the “north woods” near Willits where they renovated an abandoned log cabin. It was during this period, spent out in the trees, where MacDonald decided to devote her studio time to establishing an arts practice in fiber and painting. After seven years and having two children, they decided to move to town for logistical reasons. And, it has been the highs and the lows of living in a timber-based economy, including California’s redwood tourism, that has inspired a lifetime of capturing this uniquely American regional vernacular.


Included were over 20 pieces with paintings, prints and
fiber works. There is a 20-page catalogue which can be purchased for $15 directly from the artist (linda@lindamacdonald.com). The exhibition ran from May 14 – June 20, 2010. Facebook event information HERE.

Top: Triangles in the Forest, 2007 (oil on paper)
Middle: Down by the River, 2009 (oil on paper)
Bottom: California Trees, 2009 (oil on paper)

CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE

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The thing we shouldn’t be asking artists to do


Heart of Darkness by Cornelia Parker, 2004 from Earth: art of a changing world, London 2009

This is Climate Action on Cultural Hertitage week – it’s an initiative championed by Bridget McKenzie as a response to the growing number of individuals and organisations calling for a more clearly defined sense of purpose from the arts and heritage sector.  People like Al Tickell of Julie’s Bicycle ask: “Why do we expect moral leadership to come from corporations and science? Surely the meaningful nature of the arts in society puts it in a position to take a lead on climate action?”

There are two aspects to this. Firstly it’s about how we behave ourselves. Art fairs, say, have become an example of the muscularity of the art industry. As curators/critics Maja and Reuben Fowkes have asked,  is this world of global art jamborees a sustainable one? Gustav Metzger’s Reduce Art Flights was one of the artist’s passionate “appeals”, this time to the art world to reconsider how they had been seduced into transporting themselves and their works around the globe. Furtherfield.org’s We Won’t Fly For Art was equally explicit, asking artists to commit to opting out of the high profile career track that conflates your ability to command air tickets with success.

Industries can change the way they behave. Tickell’s work with the music business has already shown how a cultural industry can transform itself in terms of process.

But there’s also the role of art as a spoke in the wheel of culture. Science itself changes nothing. To become a transitional society requires more than policy. The real change must be cultural. So should climate be the subject matter of art?

Pause for thought: Do we want rock stars enjoining us to change our ways? Please God, no. See? If it doesn’t work for rock music, why should it work for other art forms?

In an article being published next week on the RSA Arts & Ecology website, Madeleine Bunting will be arguing strongly against the urge to push artists into an instrumental role in climate:

“The visual arts offer a myriad of powerful ways to think and feel more deeply about our age and our humanity, but it is almost impossible to trace the causal links of how that may feed through to political engagement or behaviour change,” she cautions.

It is time to accept that artists don’t simply  ”do” climate. Even the most obviously campaigning art is of little value if it is simply reducible to being about climate. They may be inspired to create by the facts of science and economics, as Metzger and Ruth Catlow and Marc Garrett of Furtherfield were in those examples above, but if you asked them to make art about climate they’d almost certainly run a mile.

What was interesting about the RA exhibition Earth: art of a changing world was the way that made that explicit. Artists like Cornelia Parker and Keith Tyson were clear in saying their pieces that they weren’t necessarily conceived with climate in mind at all, (though both are passionate about the subject). The decision to include Parker’s Heart of Darkness as an a piece of work to make us ponder the destruction of our planet was a curatorial one.

There’s a kind of separation between church and state needed here; institutions shouldn’t just be looking to their carbon footprints, they should be looking to see how they can contextualise this cultural shift with what they show their audiences – whatever the artform. It is up to the curators, directors and art directors to take on this role. In this coming era, we urgently need events, exhibitions and festivals that make us feel more deeply about the change taking place around us – and we need them to find new audiences for those explorations too.

But what we shouldn’t be doing is asking artists to make art about climate.

Read Bridget McKenzie’s Framework for climate action in cultural and heritage organisations

Follow Climate Action on Cultural Hertitage #cach on twitter

Go to RSA Arts & Ecology

DESIGN-AND-BUILD EARTH ARchiTecture RESIDENCY in Ghana

Download Call as PDF

http://www.focusonthearts.org
http://afropoets.tripod.com/eta
E-mail: africoae@gmail.com

CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS

ARchiTecture Residency: DESIGN-BUILD-AND-LIVE IN PROJECT

Target Group: International

Discipline: All the arts (visual, performing, literary and new genres), Architecture

Duration: 3 to 24 months according to project scope and nature of funding.

Organizing Institution: FOTA Foundation, a registered NGO in Ghana (FOTA is an acronym for “focus on the arts”)

This is a project-based residency opportunity for creative persons in earth architecture, earth art/ land art/ earthworks, engineering, and others who can design-and-build dwellings or non-dwellings out of earth and other materials from the environment.

Working individually or in teams, the participant in the ARchiTecture (art+architecture) Residency Project will live in the village next to our 800-acre Artist Village in development at Maabang in the Ashanti Region of Ghana until the participant completes the project on the 800 acreage and can move in. Project is open to traditional and  modern construction methods, and experimental approaches that are known to work. Submissions in methods such as adobe, cob, compressed earth, rammed earth,  ceramic house, poured/cast earth, papercrete, earthbag, straw-bale, stackwall, earth-shelter, earthship, and other best practices may therefore be in order. Integration of rainwater harvesting, solar and wind energy generation system are indispensable but not obligatory. The lot size and shape are open; you could build it on 120×120 ft plot, an acre, or more. The only criteria that should be met are:

  1. Using earth/ other materials from the environment in part or in whole
  2. Creating a durable non-dwelling or a dwelling of at least three-bed rooms ready to move in
  3. production budget of between €1,000 to €5,000 Euros.

Priority may be given to those who have funding or can secure part-funding to complete their conceived project

For Architecture, in the framework of Fathy (2000), the contemporary participant specialist will be assigned a local master builder and two assistants, or as relative to the
proposed process and structure. In sum, we will collaborate with the international participant to procure her/him the per diem and accommodation, and assistance from
local specialists and interns in constructing the structures in anticipation that cross- cultural interchange and growth in knowledge and skills will be commonplace.
International participants will be responsible for sourcing own return air ticket, insurance,  and other personal costs. One of our supporting area institutions is the School of Fine  Art, College of Arts and Social Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) at Kumasi; so, academic presentations and relevant others are possible.

Individuals or teams wishing to participate in the project should submit formal application to the Artistic Committee; the application should include your work plan, CV/resume, and a sample of completed works or web site to: africoae@gmail.com. The work plan should include at least 3 sketches of the floor plan/ sections/ elevations, budget, and a description of the method/materials, participants, time estimates, etc required to complete the proposed project.

Conceptual basis

The art+architecture project takes in the theoretical frame of the book, Architecture for the Poor: An Experiment in Rural Egypt by a known Egyptian architect, Hassan Fathy. In it, he puts forward that an informed person can, in fact, self-build durable, aesthetic and highly functional buildings without using expensive materials. Along these lines, we are developing a model artist village on some 800 acres in Maabang in the Ahafo Ano North District of the Ashanti Region of Ghana for replication in other parts of Africa. For the locals, it will mean a resolution to the age-old problem for people of artistry- painters, sculptors, actors, dancers, musicians, designers, and others who require low-cost and expanse of space in which to live and work; and for persons in the arts from around the world, it will be a contact point for artist-in-residence for community-based arts projects, cross-cultural conferences and environmental retreats.  Thus, we will next add studios, and a multipurpose complex for conferences and community-based arts mission to these residential cottages, as would be road construction to link parts of the village.

We are equally open to some alternative Housing Development Models that work. One example is the condominium program by which International NGOs with similar goals as ours, can design-and-build their structure at own costs and pay development due of €100 per room/per year, as the grounds are owned by FOTA Foundation. If the local artist/ architect group footed all cost, the group would need to pay development due of 50 GH¢ per room/per year, as the grounds belong to our Foundation. However, we are strict that the completed structure be used solely for the purpose proposed.

Location

Maabang is a rural community in the Ahafo-Ano North District in the north-western part  of Ashanti Region. The area is located between latitude 6˚ 47’N and 7 02’N and longitude 2˚ 26’W and 2˚ 04’W. The District Hospital at Tepa is the major health facility  around the Maabang Traditional Area; there are four smaller health service stations. Like  much of Ghana, few of the roads are tarred. The project acreage is along the main road, Tepa-Goaso Road. About 85% of the working population entails farmers in cassava, yam, maize, and plantain but chiefly in cocoa. There, in the town, is a cocoa research center. Timber is one of the many traditional commodities, as the region is mostly of tropical rainforest. Maabang is in the deciduous savannah transition zone. The mean monthly temperature ranges from 26° (in August) to 30° (in March). Relative humidity is generally high, ranging between 75-80 percent in the Rainy season and 70-72 percent in the dry season. The mean annual rainfall is between 125 cm and 180cm. Nationwide, there are two main seasons, the raining season and dry season. The raining season is from approximately April to October followed by the dry season, which starts in December with the Hamattan wind blowing from the Saharan Desert and ends in March.

Arrival

Board flight from a major international airport to Kokota International Airport (ACC), and then to Sunyani Airport; Maabang is 45 minutes drive from Sunyani.

DEADLINE: Ongoing but apply at least two months in advance

TO APPLY: Candidates should send the following materials to africoae@gmail.com

  1. Formal Proposal (includes budget and work plan)
  2. Bio/resume
  3. Other relevant materials (includes work sample or web site)

For additional information go to: http://afropoets.tripod.com/eta and www.focusonthearts.org

California Map Project

{California Map Project, 1969, by John Baldessari}

Somehow I missed learning about this piece until just recently, but it’s my new favorite work of “land art.” In 1969, John Baldessari took the map of California (lower right) and then went to each place on the map where the map letters spelling ‘California’ would be located. At these sites, he spelled out the letter in rocks or some other way, or maybe he found them. I don’t know exactly how he mad the piece, but it’s a pretty hilarious work and definitely in line with my other favorite piece of land art, Bruce Nauman’s untitled text piece which states, “Leave the Land Alone.” (A whole issue of Mammut was devoted to this text piece.)

Unfortunately, the online images of Baldessari’s piece aren’t that great. I’ll keep my eyes open for a better version, maybe in a book image that can be scanned. I also just read an excellent Dave Hickey piece on land art from the September-October 1971 issue of Art in America. In it, Hickey examines the perceived notion that land or earth artists were challenging the status of object production or the space of the museum. This is a viewpoint that still seems to be thrown around today. Hickey points out that the work was marketable and that many museums commissioned land art projects. He goes on to write that

It is not the Earth artists who are challenging the market and the museums, but the magazines themselves. Earth art and its unpackageable peers cannot hurt the market, but extensive magazine coverage can, since not as much object art will get exposure. The magazines have found in this unpackageable art a vehicle through which they can declare their independence from art dealers who invented the critical press, nurtured it, and have tended to treat it like a wholly own subsidiary. Now there is an art form ideally suited to presentation via magazine. Work consisting of photographs and documentation is not presented by journalism, but as journalism—a higher form—needless to say.

The people on the magazines must believe (and I think rightly) that these indefinite art forms might do for the magazines what Pop Art did for the dealers—lend a certain institutional luster,, and with it a modicum of arbitrary power.

It’s a great read of Earth Art and it makes sense to me. And works like Baldessari’s map project or Nauman’s text piece point to movements spawned by Earth Art, such as environmental art, where it’s not about bulldozers and diesel or creating monuments, but instead a use of land in a way that is less invasive. And artists have come up with a variety of strategies to turn that kind of art into careers—whether that means founding their own non-profits, existing on museum commissions or yes, making things for galleries. It’s hard to be a rebel these days, but there are still interesting things to do.

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